Sunday, August 8, 2010

Papa a la Huancaina

Coming from a Peruvian background, I am going to venture into veganizing a few quintessential Peruvian dishes, like this one.  It's creamy, savoury and so satisfying.  Paired with a tangy, dark flavour like Grilled Smoked Tofu - you are looking at one delicious meal.

"Papa a la Huancaina" means "Huancayo styled potatoes" with Huancayo being a region in Peru.

A curious bit of info, as Peru is "birthplace" of the potato, the word "potato" comes from the Quechua (language of the Inca) word for potato, "papa", and also is where the Spanish word "papa" comes from, like papas fritas.

Papa a la Huancaina (with caramelized smoked tofu)

Time:  45 minutes (plus 24 hour chill)      |      Servings: 4      |      Difficulty:  Low

2 containers Tofutti "Better than Cream Cheese"
5 bell peppers, either red or yellow, or a combo, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 cup non-dairy milk
1 tablespoon preferred vegetable oil
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic/onion powder
1/2 teaspoon nutritional yeast

1 lb potatoes, favourite kind, boiled whole and sliced

2 packages smoked tofu, cut into strips
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce
1 teaspoon preferred vegetable oil

Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)
Chopped tomato, for garnish (optional)

Begin by heating oil in a frying pan on medium-high. Add bell peppers and onion, and cook until softened, about 5-10 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 5 minutes longer.

In a blender, add bell pepper mixture, cream cheese, non-dairy milk, and spices.  Blend until a smooth consistency is reached. Add more non-dairy milk if a thinner consistency is desired.

Place in a bowl, tupperwear, etc, and allow to chill overnight in the refrigerator.

When sauce is ready, place potatoes in a pot of  salted cold water, and bring up to boil.  Boil until tender with a fork, about 45 minutes for medium sized potatoes.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, coat strips of smoked tofu with soy sauce, syrup and sriracha.  Allow to marinade for 15-30 minutes.  Sautee in a pan with oil on medium-high heat, using marinade liquid to deglaze while becoming caramelized, about 10 minutes.  Be careful not to burn.

Slice potatoes and drizzle with Huancaina sauce, serve with caramelized smoked tofu. Garnish with chopped tomato and cilantro, if desired.

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